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Sunday, May 29, 2011

Do You Really Need Heart Surgery?

Up to 30% for surgical procedures in the US are unnecessary. Each year, more than 1 million heart patients are treated with angioplasty and stents which restore normal circulation to the heart and reduce angina pain.

The problem is that angioplasty and stents are overused. A study of more that 2,300 patients by the American College of  Cardiology found that patients with stable angina that were treated with  medications like nitroglycerine had the same outcome  of those treated with invasive procedure of stents.

Who is helped by stents: People with unstable agina, people with a significant blockage in the left main coronary artery, or with three coronary arteries blocked and weakened heart muscle. People with stable angina should be treated with medications to control pain , reduce blood pressure and cholesterol.

The Best Houseplants For Healthier Indoor Air

The source of most indoor pollutants are volitile organic compounds (VOCs) that "gas out" from indoor paints, varnishes, adhesives, furniture, dry cleaned clothing, cleansers, detergents, disinfectants, spot removers and air freshners. Now, not all VOCs are bad. The frangrance of flowers and a fresh baked apple pie are VOCs. But many are bad for your health.

They can cause  asthma, headaches, fatigue, eye irritation, skin rashes and more. Some like benzene, are known carcinigens. But the good news is that houseplants can remove  VOCs from the air. The pollutants are absorbed through mircroscopic openings in the leaves. The best house plants for removing VOCs from the air are:

Purple Waffle ( Hemigraphis aternata ) English Ivy ( Hedera helix )  Wax plant ( Hoya carnosa) Asparagus fern ( Asparagus densiflorus ) Purple heart plant ( Tradescantia pallida ) Boston fern (Nphrolepus exaltata Bostoniensis ) Bamboo plant ( Chamaedorea seifrizzzii ) Rubber plant ( Ficus robusta ) Gerbera daisy ( Gerbera jamesonii ) and Golden pothos ( Epipremnum aureum ).

For maximum indoor air quality improvment, you should experimemnt with multiple species as needed. The exact number is difficult to determine depending on your indoor air quality. Also, keep in mind that plants grown without dirt, usually in pebbles or another open aggregate , are  30 to 50% more effective in removing VOCs than those grown in potting soil. This is due to the greater air flow through pebbles to the plant zone where microbes break down the VOCs.